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On November 8, 2018, the Department of Labor (DOL) issued 4 new opinion letters providing both employers and employees further insight into the agency’s views regarding compliance with federal labor laws.  While the letters touch on a variety of issues, perhaps the most notable change involves the DOL’s about-face regarding the amount of “non-tipped” work an employee can perform while still receiving a lower “tip-credit” wage. Essentially, this new guidance does away with the previous…
In a big win for the tech industry and app developers, and for other companies seeking to enforce arbitration agreements through web-based interactions, last week the Second Circuit Court of Appeals held that the plaintiff in a putative class action entered into an enforceable arbitration agreement when he registered for Uber Technology, Inc.’s (Uber) app. See Meyer v. Uber Technologies, Inc., et al., Nos. 16-2750-cv, 16-2752-cv (2d Cir. Aug. 17, 2017).  The Uber app publishes…
This past week, the nation was shocked with yet another senseless act of violence in the workplace. On Monday, a disgruntled former employee, walked into his former employer’s job site and killed 5 of his former co-workers before taking his own life.  No one would suggest that the employer could have done something differently to prevent this kind of violence.  However, these events underscore the importance of having strong practices and procedures in place…
2016 brought about a host of changes for employers, including new political leaders, ever-changing technology, and new and more open dialogue on a variety of different issues. Aside from politics, perhaps one of the biggest issues brought to the forefront this past year concerns the topic of mental health. Once taboo, discussions of mental health issues are being publicly championed by the likes of Michelle Obama, Kate Middleton, Kristen Bell, and Lady Gaga. This new…
A Dallas jury recently awarded a verdict of more than a million dollars to a vocational nurse based upon her claims of sexual harassment and intentional infliction of emotional distress. While it appears that verdict will not ultimately be enforced — following a post-verdict settlement reached between the parties just minutes before the jury’s ruling that was smaller, yet still sizable — it is a warning sign for employers in terms of changing views on…
How independent are musicians who play and perform with others? Do they have more artistic control on their own, or do they only become truly great artists in collaboration with others when their independent talents combine to make incredible music? We suspect David Lee Roth, Sammy Hagar, Richie Sambora, and others who have “gone solo” and played in multiple groups might have interesting opinions on this issue. However, if you sit up straight as soon…
The leaves are changing, and the air is turning cooler. While employers are gearing up for fall, voting leave may be far from their minds. After all, even though the presidential candidates are in full swing campaign mode, the “real” election is over a year away, right? As an employer, I can rest easy not worrying about pesky voting affecting my employees. Not so fast. While the “big” presidential election is still a year away,…
Wage and hour issues are oftentimes amongst a company’s least favorite topics of conversation and yet, at the same time, can be the source of major liabilities. And just as the corporate world tries to figure out where the Department of Labor (DOL) and the courts are going with the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) and state wage and hour laws, more change is on the way. We have previously indicated that the Obama administration…
Summertime can be the high season for many service establishments, such as restaurants, hotels and recreational facilities, as we all take some time to relax and enjoy the weather. But with wage and hour litigation constantly on the rise, busier service season can also meet the opposite of relaxation and enjoyment for services business, because busier locations can mean increasing employee hours and wage-related issues.  To help avoid this summer season from resulting in more…